Bulawayo High Court, Clears Manwele Beer Hall, Friend ‘killer’ As State Has Failed To Prove Its Case

A MAN from Bulawayo who allegedly fatally stabbed his friend in a fit of rage for admonishing him after he insulted his aunt has been acquitted after a High Court Judge ruled that he was not guilty of murder. Simon Ncube, 27, allegedly flew into a rage after being chastised by his friend Nkululeko Vuma for insulting his aunt, Rita Nxumalo.

The incident happened at Manwele Beer garden in Mzilikazi suburb at around 9PM on April 10 last year. Ncube had allegedly threatened his aunt after she refused to sing a song for him in a bar.

Bulawayo High Court Judge, Justice Francis Bere, on Friday said the State had failed to prove its case against Ncube beyond reasonable doubt because the accused did not know the knife presented before the court as evidence.

“After considering evidence brought before the court, we only have circumstantial evidence which we can use to convict accused of the crime. However, the court believes he must be given the benefit of doubt. He is therefore found not guilty and acquitted,” said Justice Bere.

Taking to the witness stand, Nxumalo told the court that Ncube accused her of killing his mother. “He confronted me at the beer garden, grabbed and shook me. He asked me to sing for him. I refused but promised to sing for him later,” she said.

“He suddenly started accusing me and my brothers of killing his mother. He went on to swear that one of us was going to die that very day. The late Vuma asked him to mind his manners but Ncube told him to shut up as he was a puppy. I then left to relieve myself.”

Nxumalo said when she returned, Ncube had left. “A few minutes later, I was told that Vuma had been stabbed and when I went out of the beer garden, I found him in a pool of blood and my nephew had disappeared from the scene.”

Ncube’s lawyer, Lerato Mguni from Job Sibanda and Associates, said his client was infuriated by Vuma for intervening in his conversation with a family member. A post-mortem report submitted before Justice Bere shows that Vuma died due to severe damage of the aorta.

Whisper Mabhaudi for the State said Ncube tried to flee the country after committing the offence. “He went home and threw the murder weapon on his sister’s blankets. He packed a few clothes and a passport before leaving the house. His sister threw the knife away,” he said.

Mabhaudi told the court that the police arrested Ncube less than 24 hours later at a relative’s house in Mahatshula. “Police were informed that he was sleeping in a vehicle outside the house. They surrounded the house and arrested Ncube. They also recovered his clothes and passport,” he said. Thandeka Moyo  source-chronicle

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